Actual Freedom Library

Selected Writings on Intelligence




about Intelligence

Richard | 2 | 3 |




Related Questions/Objections

What is Consciousness?

What is Thought?

What is Apperception?

Thoughts Create Feelings

Actualism is a Belief System/ A Theory

Arrogant and Know-It-All


Intelligence: 1 The faculty of understanding; intellect  2 Quickness or superiority of understanding, sagacity  3 The action or fact of understanding something; knowledge, comprehension (of something)  4 An intelligent or rational being, esp. a spiritual one; a spirit  5 Knowledge communicated by or obtained from another; news; information, spec. of military value  b Exchange of knowledge, information, opinion, etc.; communication  c A relation or basis of communication between people or parties; an understanding between or with. Oxford Dictionary

Richard: When I use the word intelligence I mean the same thing as the dictionary definition of intelligence: the cognitive faculty of understanding and comprehending (as in intellect and sagacity) ... which means the cerebral ability to sensibly and thus judiciously think, reflect, appraise, plan, and implement considered activity for beneficial purposes (and to be able to rationally convey reasoned information to other human beings so that coherent knowledge can accumulate around the world and to the next generations).

No other animal can do this.

Speaking personally, I find the whole furore about what ‘intelligence’ really is very amusing: there are people who talk sagely about … um … dolphins, for just one example, as being ‘intelligent’ and will argue their case vigorously and vociferously and scorn IQ tests as being a measure of intelligence. Yet when these self-same people turn their attention to ‘outer space’ or ‘deep space’ (as the SETI peoples do), they all of a sudden know precisely what intelligence actually is … when they say that they are searching for extraterrestrial intelligence they do not for one moment mean that they are looking for ‘intelligent’ creatures like … um … dolphins, for example. No way … they are looking for what intelligence actually is as per the dictionary definition.

An insight is a function of the human brain in action in the human skull … it is a rapid penetration into the character, nature, disposition or quality of a situation or circumstances; a sudden apprehension of the solution to a problem or difficulty; an immediate cerebral view or disclosure; it is when one mentally ‘gets’ something one has not properly understood before; it is a cognitive ‘seeing’ of something important to comprehension that comes with the understanding that the insight reveals what theoretical or abstract or conceptual thinking was unable to arrive at by the use of – sometimes laborious – sequential thought.

An insight into the human condition is direct seeing, unmediated by ‘I’ and/or ‘me’ ... and when the moment of insight is over, then the fun begins. Because one must start from where one is at and move towards what the insight disclosed. However, one has had the insight, and the insight galvanises one into matter-of-fact thought instead of merely conceptual thought. Thinking is still linear, of course, but one now has the advantage of being able to see the obvious.

Seeing the obvious relieves one from believing, trusting, hoping and having faith. There is now a confidence, born out of the certainty of the insight, that enables one to actualise the insight in one’s daily life ... and this actualisation means that one’s life is changed, irrevocably (this is a potential sticking point, incidentally, for people want to be free without having to change ... but that is another topic). It is this confidence that effects actual change, for there is an impelling movement of actualisation – being pulled from ahead – which is what comes from the choiceless action that ensues with being activated from the insight. This is qualitatively different from a propelling movement – being pushed from behind – which is what comes from the disciplined action that eventuates with being motivated by the certitude of conceptual thought.

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